With so much happening in the world, I needed to take the time to embrace, adjust, think and feel. This is such an unknown and complex time for us all. Information, evidence, warnings, advisories and statistics seem to change daily. I needed to navigate what felt right for me and honestly that is always changing too.
I wanted to react to all this in a way that felt authentic for me. I do most of my business in person. The showing up physically (as well as mentally and emotionally) is what makes my job so amazing! Initially, I was able to see the positivity. For our pace to slow down, for there to be time for reflection, for hyper awareness and for us all to respond to social responsibility. This reaction is very true to my personality of reacting with confidence and humour. When the ‘state of emergency’ was announced, shit got real. No in person support could happen. I operate with the ‘it takes a village’ mentality and the sudden physical distance hurt. How was I going to continue doing what I love? Prenatal, birth and postpartum are such vulnerable times already. I desperately did not want my people to feel abandoned. I think all doulas believe and know that in our hearts we provide an essential service. How was I going to face such vulnerability? There have been moments I am not ok. I miss what was but I still want to show up. We are all grieving change. I promise to you, I will not turn my concern into worry and I will be present.
While currently I am supporting postpartum clients virtually, I am still not keen to jump further into the online world. I am proud of those doulas that already offered these services but it just hasn’t yet felt like my jam. It feels forced. This too may change. I do not want anyone to feel any less supported because of what is being dictated by the world around us! I will and can adapt. Thank you to those who have checked in and thank you to those who have allowed me to continually check in on you (I genuinely love getting your selfies, food pics, baby pics, FaceTime calls, etc)
So this is where I’m at……
I am now focused on what can be. I can hold space for your feelings and your efforts. I can provide support virtually. I can tell you the latest hospital visitor policies here in Hamilton. I can ‘meet’ you for a virtual consult if you are pregnant. I can share prenatal preparation information. I can check in with you on your postpartum journey. I can listen to your current feelings on being pregnant or being a mother during all of this. I still view doula support as essential. Our human rights still matter. You are seen. You are supported.
For the time being, my virtual services will be ‘pay what you can’. My intent is not to devalue doula support in any way but these are unprecedented times. We cannot change the past or predict the future so I am choosing to be present. And I will remain hopeful we can awesomely be face to face again soon!